[image] NOW Muse, if ever, now look brisk and gay; The Spring's at hand; blithe looks like that display. Use all the Schemes and colours now of Speech, Use all the Flow'rs that Poetry enrich. Its Glories all, its blooming Beauties bring, As may resemble the returning Spring. Let the same Musick through thy Verse resound As in the Woods and shady Groves is found. Let every line such fragrant praise exhale As rises up from some sweet-smelling Vale. Let Lights and Shades, as in the Woods appear, And shew in painted Verse the season of the Year.
Come then away, for the first welcome Morn Of the spruce Moneth of May begins to dawn. This Day; so tells the Poets sacred Page; Bright Chloris did in Nuptial bands engage, This very day the knot was tied; and thence The lovely Maid a Goddess did commence. The signs of joy did everywhere appear, On Earth, in Heaven, throughout the Sea and Air; 20 [image] No wandring Cloud was seen in all the Sky, And if there were, 'twas of a curious dye. [Latin: 20] The Air serene, not an ungentle blast Ruffled the waters with its rude embrace, The wind that was, breath'd Odours all around, And only fann'd the streams, and only kiss'd the ground. Of unknown Flow'rs now such a numerous birth Appear'd, as e'en astonish'd Mother Earth. The Lily grew 'midst barren Heath and Sedg, And the Rose blush'd on each unprickly hedg. The purple Violet and the Daffodil, The places now of angry Nettles fill, This great and joyful Day, on which she knew What 'twas to be a Wife and Goddess too. The grateful Flora yearly did express In shews, Religious Pomp and gaudiness, Long as she thriv'd in Rome, and reign'd among The other Gods, a vast and numerous throng; But when the sacred Tribe was forc'd from Rome. Among the rest an Exile she became, 40 Strip'd of her Plays, and of her Fane bereft, Nought of the grandeur of a Goddess left. [Latin: 40] Since then, no more ador'd on Earth by Man, But forc'd o'er Flowers to preside and reign, The best she can, she still keeps up the Day; Not as of old, when bless'd with store she lay, When with a lavish hand her bounties flew, She ha'nt the heart, and means to do it now, But in a way fitting her humble state She always did, and still does celebrate. And now that she the better may attend The flowry Empire under her command, To all the World at times she does resort, Now in this part, now that she keeps her Court. And so the Seasons of the year require; For here 'tis Spring, perhaps 'tis Autumn there. With ease she flies to the remotest shores, And visits in the way a world of Flow'rs. In Zephyr's painted Car she cuts the Air, Pleas'd with the way, her Spouse the Charioteer. 60 It was the year, (thrice blest that beautious year,) Which mighty Charles's sacred Name did bear. A golden year the Heavens brought about In high procession with a joyful shout, [Latin: 60] A year that barr'd up Janus brazen Gates, [image] that brought home peace, and lay'd our monstrous heats; A greater gift, bless'd Albion, thou didst gain, It brought home God-like Charles, and all his peaceful train; Compos'd our Chaos; cover'd o'r the fears, And clos'd the bleeding wounds of twenty years; Nor felt the Gown alone the fruits of peace, But Gardens, Woods, and all the flowry race; This year to every thing fresh honours brought, Nor 'midst these were the learned Arts forgot. Poor exil'd Flora with the Sylvan Gods Came back again to their old lov'd abodes;